America’s Voting Systems Need A Glow Up
COMMENTARY

October 6, 2020by Business Leaders Council, Democracy is Good for Business

As 2020 has shown, our future is not set in stone. There is no telling when the COVID-19 pandemic will be over or when the next crisis might arise. This uncertainty only cements the fact that our democracy must meet the demands of today if it hopes to create a better tomorrow. 

This starts with securing and modernizing our election systems. In order for our democracy to thrive, it’s critical that all eligible voters have access to a safe and fair voting experience, especially amid a global health crisis. This requires reinforcing our collective faith in both in-person voting and alternate options, like mail-in ballots and voting early. Flexible voting options will ensure that concerns for one’s health or unexpected challenges do not prevent any American from exercising their right to vote. 

With fewer workers in the office, students on campus and family members at Sunday dinner, the companies we know and trust are stepping up to play an important role in communicating accurate information about voting options by educating employees and consumers alike on how they can make their voices heard. In the ever-changing reality we now occupy, leaders across sectors must actively protect and promote democracy, acting as couriers of the truth and defenders of the American experiment. 

These leaders must ensure our American experiment is prepared to tackle the challenges of the 21st century.

This is why we support common sense, bipartisan policy reforms that will modernize our current election systems. Election modernization is long overdue and this year, we can’t afford to delay it any longer. We must invest in resilient voting processes that can withstand a pandemic-era election year and whatever challenges the future may hold. This includes keeping voter roles as up-to-date as possible by modernizing the voter registration process, ensuring that eligible voters have options to vote absentee on or before Election Day, and protecting in-person voting options including early vote and Election Day.

Strengthening our election processes is not a partisan issue, it’s an American one. With the general election less than two months away, adopting these policies must be a priority. Politicizing necessary reforms only serves to threaten the foundation of our democracy and the stability of our economy. 

It’s these economic impacts that are too often left unnoticed, but history shows that a prosperous business climate is contingent on a strong and trusted democracy. Outdated tools and voting systems introduce risk and uncertainty. The consequences of this go far beyond diminished morale and undermined faith in government- they contribute to a stagnation of our system, which was always meant to be a living one.

American jobs, businesses, families and so much more rely on a strong democracy and a belief that our voices are being heard and our votes counted. In order for businesses to operate effectively and invest in the future, we must enable the low-risk, reliable environment they require. 

Luckily, we are a nation of innovators and problem solvers. Also luckily, there are solutions right at our fingertips. We cannot stand in our own way. We must put our democratic processes over our tribalistic politics. 

America will no doubt be confronted by pandemic-like challenges in the future. Despite these challenges, and perhaps because of them, it’s critical that trusted elections continue to occur and that we update the tools used to facilitate these elections. Strengthening our voting processes requires an investment in our democracy. It’s this investment that will propel us forward, toward the future we hope to create, not the past we’re scared to leave.


Members of the Business Leaders Council contributing to this article include Jesse Fink, Investor; John Driscoll, CEO, CareCentrix; Donna Harris, Founder, Builders and Backers; Hajj Fleming, CEO, Founder, Rebrand Cities; Jeff Cherry, CEO, Founder, Conscious Venture Lab; Jennifer Lawton, CEO, Old School Venture; Ally Burns, CEO, Village Capital; William Morris, CEO, Kentucky CBD Blend; Daniel Borsch, Owner, Burger Boy Diner; and David Cohen, Co-Founder, Managing Partner, Techstars. Learn more about Democracy is Good for Business.

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